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My Men in Skirts

3 October 2006

I couldn’t resist putting up a picture of my boys in their kilts.

Interesting story about how I made the children’s kilts. I did a bit of research on “How to make kilts” on the internet. As you do. And I was inundated with really complicated patterns and instructions involving inside and outside aprons, linings and waist suppression(?). Way too complicated and involved for my liking. See Figure A, by R. E. Glover.

I wanted to find something a bit simpler. I mean, after all, a kilt is just a pleated wrap skirt right? Hyuk. Anyway, I managed to find a guy who made mini kilts for his GI Joe dolls. His pattern was much more my style. Cut here, fold here, fold here, sew there and you’re done! (Ok I made a few modifications.)

So I went to the fabric shop, looking to buy some standard cotton with tartan print. I found some cute ones. Stuff that looked like primary school pencil cases! I was just about to buy 3m, when I called my mother. Just to double check my length estimate.

She said, “You’re buying tartan? Oh don’t do that! I have some right here!”

Apparently in 1986 my mother’s sister travelled to Edinburgh to live and work as a nurse. She bought several metres of pure wool tartan fabric and two child sized kilt pins. She gave them to my mother, and they have been sitting in a cupboard for 20 years! What’s even weirder, is that the tartan pattern is a vague resemblance to my husband’s family Scottish “clan”. Weeeeeird.

It was all pretty simple to make. The pleats were a bitch though. And I couldn’t get the kilt to sit nicely on the boy’s waist. I tried buttons and buckles. And finally settled with a strip of velcro.

I was surprised that the boys didn’t fiddle or wriggle uncomfortably with the whole “skirt” aspect of it. Because in one fatal swoop, they could’ve ripped that velcro right off and shown the world what Scottish men really wore under their kilts. (Answer : Their Spiderman jocks)